TheTimesTribune.com, Corbin, KY

Entertainment

April 30, 2012

Bentley brings tour and show to The Arena on May 11

CORBIN — By Jeff Noble / Staff writer

For Dierks Bentley, one of life’s greatest sights is one of a sunset.

Coming from his native Arizona, the country singer and songwriter has had many a chance to see some spectacular ones in his young career — a career that continues to rise like the sun.

Those sunsets have also created some of his best sounds, which will continue as Bentley and his band come to Corbin for a show less than two weeks from today.

His “Country & Cold Cans Tour 2012” makes a stop at The Arena at 7:30 p.m. Friday, May 11, and will feature the Eli Young Band, The Cadillac Black and what Arena officials say will be a “Very Special Guest.” Tickets for the show are now available at The Arena box office and at all Ticketmaster locations, or by phone at 1-800-745-3000. You can also log on to www.thecorbinarena.com, www.ticketmaster.com, or www.dierks.com for more information.

What will be special are some of the songs Bentley will sing that come from his current and sixth studio album, “Home,” that was released in February. Two of them will definitely be heard — the lead single “Am I The Only One,” as well as the second single and title track, “Home.” Both reached No. 1 on the radio country charts, with “Am I The Only One” being certified gold, while “Home” became Bentley’s ninth single to hit the No. 1 spot.

For a man who once worked in the archives at the old Nashville Network before he hit the big time, Bentley’s meteoric rise has been stellar indeed. Considering he has had 10 Grammy nominations and album sales of over $5 million, he’s done quite well.

Much like the way Bentley records a song.

“It’s really like a shotgun blast. You shoot and see where it goes. I just look for great melodies, and things that are honest and sincere. Country music is honest and really does tell a story. When you put a song to record, I look for those great stories that come from your heart, or stories that are great fun, which give you a chance to dance, or to kick back with a beer or two with your friends,” Bentley said.

The good-time, high-five style of Bentley’s music shows one side of his immense talent and good humor. Then there’s another side to his work, which he discovered when he sat in at a famed Nashville club known for its Bluegrass sound.

“I discovered Bluegrass when I first went inside that club, The Station Inn. I sat in and listened to the bands and singers, and I discovered how a banjo, fiddles and a mandolin could be played in a contemporary way. I used some of the elements to it in my music and it worked. It definitely changed my life,” said Bentley.

Bentley’s “Country & Cold Cans Tour” has taken him, band members and crew into Canada and Australia, before hitting their current American stops in cities like Los Angeles, and later in Detroit, St. Louis and at the Kentucky Bourbon Festival in Bardstown on Sept.14. Many smaller cities and towns are also part of the tour, which he added gives them an edge when they perform.

“I’ve always considered us a small-town band. Where we play 250 gigs a year, we do play a lot of smaller towns, and because each town is unique in a different part of the country, we thrive on smaller towns. But whether it’s Corbin or L.A., every show’s different. We spend about two hours preparing for each show, going over what songs the crowd would like, what appeals with the audience, and making sure we put on a great performance. We give every show 120 percent,” Bentley said.

But when it is time to come down, or to unwind, he has got a solution.

Bentley put it this way, “It’s behind the tour bus. I’ve a got a 1977 Jeep CJ-7, and it gives me a chance to get away from the daily grind and feel human again.”

He uses the 36-year-old Jeep for driving around some of the towns they play, usually before the show. Bentley and the show will be coming into Corbin from a performance the night before in Charlottesville, Va., so it is hard to say if he will be able to get behind the wheel. But like his music, and his penchant for doing things his own away, Bentley will find a way.

And a place to go to see it all.

“Depending on when we get in, I’ll take the Jeep out to a high place. I like to catch every sunset that I can. I hear The Arena’s on a high spot. It’ll be pretty up there.”

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